Remove Investigations Math Curriculum For Grades K-5 from Plainview-Old Bethpage Schools sign now

During the past decade, traditional math programs all across the country have been under attack. Non-traditional programs have emerged which displace the existing and effective elementary school math curricula. They abandon the foundations of mathematics and instead rely upon the use of a calculator.

One of the most radical of these reform math programs is Investigations in Number, Data a Space developed by the Technical Education Research Center (TERC Investigations). The TERC Investigations program does not teach long division, multiplication tables or many other commonly accepted methods of arriving at an answer in a systematic fashion. As a result, students using TERC Investigations typically face significant difficulties with timed exams. Instead, TERC Investigations utilizes approximation and educated guessing to merely bring the student close to the correct answer. (Calculators do the actual number crunching).

Plainview-Old Bethpage, unlike neighboring school districts, has been using the TERC Investigations curriculum. The results that followed are horrifying.

As shown on our website, http://mysite.verizon.net/vzeubbeq/, the recently published NYS 5th grade Math Assessment scores demonstrate that the TERC Investigations math curriculum is ineffective. These math scores now place the Plainview-Old Bethpage School District closer to the bottom for meeting or exceeding NYS math standards than any of its neighboring districts. Based upon these poor results, it would be unacceptable to continue with the TERC Investigations program into the 2007-2008 school year.

Despite the administrations insistence on maintaining the use of TERC Investigations, no valid math study to date has ever proven the effectiveness of the program. In fact, the studies that have been carried out were funded by the same organizations that developed TERC Investigations and had a heavy stake in the programs effectiveness. Hundreds of leading university math professors and Nobel Laureates, who have no financial ties to TERC Investigations, condemn this math program.

The Plainview-Old Bethpage community is not alone in its fight to remove reformists math programs from curricula. School districts nationwide have been fighting these reform programs with success. In September 2006, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) released a report titled Curriculum Focal Points. The document highlighted the paramount importance of traditional mathematics instruction, a shift from their previously issued standards that led to reform math programs. The Curriculum Focal Points document advocates the return to more traditional mathematics instructional strategies, such as quick recall of addition and related subtraction facts, fluency of multiplication and division facts, and mastery of traditional algorithms.

For the benefit of our children, our school district and our community, the undersigned petitioners urge the Plainview-Old Bethpage school district to eliminate the TERC Investigations program from its core curriculum and replace it with a more traditional math program for the 2007-2008 school year.

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Nicole BrightBy:
Politics and GovernmentIn:
Petition target:
The Plainview-Old Bethpage Board of Education

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